Pancake Men

Every family has their favorite traditional foods they make for Christmas. In Michelle's house, Christmas breakfast always includes a birthday cake for Baby Jesus. Although pancake men are not a part of our holiday celebration, the children enjoyed them just the same :)

In the book Christmas in the Big Woods,

"For Christmas breakfast Ma made each child a pancake man. All the children held their plates next to the stove and watched while Ma made their pancake men one by one out of the pancake batter. Peter ate his right away, but the girls ate theirs slowly to make them last."

Not a shocker that you could have changed out Peter's name for Bug, and the above statements would be true! Bug tends to devour the things he loves to eat, barely coming up for air, while the girls tend to savour their treats!

Below is the recipe I always use to make pancakes from scratch:

1 1/4 c. flour
1 T. baking powder
1 T. sugar
1/2 t....Read more

Mock Sopapillas

In the book, The Legend of the Poinsettia, by Tomie dePaola...

"At home Lucida helped Mama clean their casita-their little house-and pat out the tortillas for their meals."

We did not make our own tortillas, but we used flour tortillas to make "Mock Sopapillas". Easy and yummy, I can almost guarantee that they will become a favorite. Because of the hot oil, I did the cooking, but the wee ones thoroughly enjoyed sprinkling them with sugar and cinnamon. There was a lot of finger dipping in sugar and cinnamon that didn't stick to the sopapillas :) Did I say yum?

flour tortillas
sugar/cinnamon mixture
cooking oil

Heat oil to approximately 400 degrees. WARNING: Obviously... keep the wee ones far away from the hot oil!!!
Using a pizza cutter, cut each tortilla into 8 pie shaped pieces.

Place several wedges into the hot oil. When one side is golden brown, carefully turn over and cook the other side. Remove from oil and drain on paper towel.
...Read more

Advent Week 2 - The Legend of the Poinsettia

The complete list of our Advent Celebration activities can be found HERE.

Poinsettias and candy canes, mangers and evergreen trees are all symbols that have come to be associated with Christmas. Some symbols are pulled from history, others from fantasy, and some have been borrowed from other celebrations. Just like learning about how Christmas is celebrated around the world, learning about the significance and origins of the symbols associated with Christmas is fascinating and meaningful. This second week of Advent we are using The Legend of the Poinsettia to begin our discussion on Christmas symbols.

WEEK 2 - Symbols of Christmas
The book: The Legend of the Poinsettia
The craft: Weaving a small blanket (scrap yarns for a 3" x 5" blanket)
The applique: A poinsettia
The recipe: Sopapillas

I can remember as a child wondering if Jesus had a Christmas tree and what kind of gifts he wanted Santa to bring. There are so many traditions and customs associated with Christmas that it is almost impossible for a child to separate secular from religious. Let's face it, it is hard to...Read more

Advent Week 1 - The Littlest Angel

WEEK 1 - Gift Giving From the Heart
The book: The Littlest Angel
The craft: Wool roving angels (natural wool roving)
The recipe: Angel wings
The applique: An angel

Children are constantly learning whether we are aware of it or not. Think about this. How many times between now and December 25 do you think someone will ask your child, "And what do YOU want for Christmas?" A very innocent question, and one that is sure to get a response from even the shyest child. But if the conversation stops there, we are teaching our children that Christmas is all about receiving.

Many years ago, I was in a Community Bible Study, and one day the speaker made this statement... "Children are born selfish, we have to teach them to be giving." My first reaction was, "NO! Children are innocent. They learn selfishness." But the more I thought about it, the more I began to agree with her. Of course, babies are innocent, but they are also self serving... they have to be to survive. As parents we teach our...Read more

Join Our Advent Celebration!

This Sunday is the first Sunday of Advent. This is a very special time for our family as we prepare for Christmas. I have put together Advent Activities to do with the wee ones and happily will be sharing our activities with you. In case you would like to join us with all or part of our activities, I'm giving a quick overview here, so you can collect books and materials in advance. I don't have all the details hammered out, but in general, there will be a book each week, an applique block, a kid craft, a recipe and possibly an extended craft. I've also included a rudimentary supply list to get you started. Whether you join us for all the activities or just some, we hope your family has a joyous and meaningful Advent!

WEEK 1 - Gift Giving From the Heart
The book: The Littlest Angel
The craft: Wool roving angels (natural wool roving)
The recipe: Angel wings
The applique: An angel

WEEK 2 - Symbols of Christmas  
The book: The Legend of the Poinsettia
The craft: Weaving a small...Read more